Can people who have had rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease have the COVID-19 vaccine?
It is important for people age 12 years and older with underlying health conditions, including rheumatic heart disease, to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Although most healthy children and young people have mild COVID-19, those with certain medical conditions are at increased risk from severe COVID-19. These include heart conditions, like (non-acute) rheumatic heart disease.
People with other pre-existing heart conditions, including congenital heart disease and a history of Kawasaki disease, are also highly recommended to have the COVID-19 vaccine. Other groups highly recommended COVID-19 vaccine from aged 12 years include those with respiratory conditions (eg, asthma and cystic fibrosis), nervous system disabilities (like cerebral palsy) and diabetes (type 1 or type 2).
To find out more about COVID-19 immunisation for children aged 12 and over, see the Kids Health page here.
The video below features Blues rugby player Matt Johnson sharing his story about rheumatic fever and his choice to be vaccinated against COVID-19.